Investigating Green Infrastructure in Dar es Salaam
Dr Finzi Saidi & Jabu Makhubu
Dickson Adu-Agyei and Mandy Schindler
Prof. Antonio Tomas
view from our stoep
“We need to demystify the aesthetic contributions of landscape architects and architects and release the “new magic” of design inherent in the new dimensions of systemic information available to us. Green infrastructure connects designers to social, economic, legal and engineering expertise around the systems that enable our lives.”
- Jochen Rabe
As a city located on the east coast of Africa, Dar es Salaam provides an ideal study of public open spaces and nature on the city and also the impact of human development on nature. The word Anthropocene, coined by Nobel Prize winner Paul Crutzen describes a new world era, which recognizes the increasing influence of human activities on the biological, geological and atmospheric systems of the Earth.
The city of Dar es Salaam is expected to have over 20 million people by 2050. The biggest impact of its growth will be development on open spaces systems as the increased population builds housing for dwelling. Some of these open spaces are sensitive landscapes, like the Msimbazi Valley, a natural wetlands drainage system, and are already under increased pressure to be built on. Loss of flora and fauna due to growing residential areas around the valley has already begun. Mangrove forests are the unique habitat of Msimbazi Valley that are under severe threat from exploitation through agriculture, aquaculture and coastal development. Strategies for the future protection of the Mangrove landscapes are needed against encroaching settlements.
Unit 15(X) in 2020 will use Msimbazi Valley and ancient Pugu Forest Reserve in Dar es Salaam as case studies, using three selected sites to study how the natural systems of Msimbazi lower basin and the forest reserve can respond to the anthropogenic interference by human activities. Three sites will be explored through the theme of remembering in order to imagine resilient green infrastructure for the city of Dar es Salaam. The aim is to define the three sites as part of a strategic network of high quality natural and semi-natural areas with other environmental features which are designed to deliver a wide range of ecosystems services and to protect biodiversity within the Msimbazi Valley and Pugu Forest of Dar es Salaam. Unit 15X aims to define green infrastructure that overlaps social systems with these unique ecosystems.